Connective Tissue: Tissue that supports and binds other tissues. It consists of CONNECTIVE TISSUE CELLS embedded in a large amount of EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX.Connective Tissue Diseases: A heterogeneous group of disorders, some hereditary, others acquired, characterized by abnormal structure or function of one or more of the elements of connective tissue, i.e., collagen, elastin, or the mucopolysaccharides.Connective Tissue Growth Factor: A CCN protein family member that regulates a variety of extracellular functions including CELL ADHESION; CELL MIGRATION; and EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX synthesis. It is found in hypertrophic CHONDROCYTES where it may play a role in CHONDROGENESIS and endochondral ossification.Connective Tissue Cells: A group of cells that includes FIBROBLASTS, cartilage cells, ADIPOCYTES, smooth muscle cells, and bone cells.Mixed Connective Tissue Disease: A syndrome with overlapping clinical features of systemic lupus erythematosus, scleroderma, polymyositis, and Raynaud's phenomenon. The disease is differentially characterized by high serum titers of antibodies to ribonuclease-sensitive extractable (saline soluble) nuclear antigen and a "speckled" epidermal nuclear staining pattern on direct immunofluorescence.Immediate-Early Proteins: Proteins that are coded by immediate-early genes, in the absence of de novo protein synthesis. The term was originally used exclusively for viral regulatory proteins that were synthesized just after viral integration into the host cell. It is also used to describe cellular proteins which are synthesized immediately after the resting cell is stimulated by extracellular signals.Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins: Regulatory proteins and peptides that are signaling molecules involved in the process of PARACRINE COMMUNICATION. They are generally considered factors that are expressed by one cell and are responded to by receptors on another nearby cell. They are distinguished from HORMONES in that their actions are local rather than distal.Collagen: A polypeptide substance comprising about one third of the total protein in mammalian organisms. It is the main constituent of SKIN; CONNECTIVE TISSUE; and the organic substance of bones (BONE AND BONES) and teeth (TOOTH).Scleroderma, Systemic: A chronic multi-system disorder of CONNECTIVE TISSUE. It is characterized by SCLEROSIS in the SKIN, the LUNGS, the HEART, the GASTROINTESTINAL TRACT, the KIDNEYS, and the MUSCULOSKELETAL SYSTEM. Other important features include diseased small BLOOD VESSELS and AUTOANTIBODIES. The disorder is named for its most prominent feature (hard skin), and classified into subsets by the extent of skin thickening: LIMITED SCLERODERMA and DIFFUSE SCLERODERMA.Fibroblasts: Connective tissue cells which secrete an extracellular matrix rich in collagen and other macromolecules.Neoplasms, Connective Tissue: Neoplasms composed of connective tissue, including elastic, mucous, reticular, osseous, and cartilaginous tissue. The concept does not refer to neoplasms located in connective tissue.Collagen Diseases: Historically, a heterogeneous group of acute and chronic diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, progressive systemic sclerosis, dermatomyositis, etc. This classification was based on the notion that "collagen" was equivalent to "connective tissue", but with the present recognition of the different types of collagen and the aggregates derived from them as distinct entities, the term "collagen diseases" now pertains exclusively to those inherited conditions in which the primary defect is at the gene level and affects collagen biosynthesis, post-translational modification, or extracellular processing directly. (From Cecil Textbook of Medicine, 19th ed, p1494)Tendons: Fibrous bands or cords of CONNECTIVE TISSUE at the ends of SKELETAL MUSCLE FIBERS that serve to attach the MUSCLES to bones and other structures.Marfan Syndrome: An autosomal dominant disorder of CONNECTIVE TISSUE with abnormal features in the heart, the eye, and the skeleton. Cardiovascular manifestations include MITRAL VALVE PROLAPSE, dilation of the AORTA, and aortic dissection. Other features include lens displacement (ectopia lentis), disproportioned long limbs and enlarged DURA MATER (dural ectasia). Marfan syndrome is associated with mutations in the gene encoding fibrillin, a major element of extracellular microfibrils of connective tissue.Pseudoxanthoma Elasticum: An inherited disorder of connective tissue with extensive degeneration and calcification of ELASTIC TISSUE primarily in the skin, eye, and vasculature. At least two forms exist, autosomal recessive and autosomal dominant. This disorder is caused by mutations of one of the ATP-BINDING CASSETTE TRANSPORTERS. Patients are predisposed to MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION and GASTROINTESTINAL HEMORRHAGE.Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome: A heterogeneous group of autosomally inherited COLLAGEN DISEASES caused by defects in the synthesis or structure of FIBRILLAR COLLAGEN. There are numerous subtypes: classical, hypermobility, vascular, and others. Common clinical features include hyperextensible skin and joints, skin fragility and reduced wound healing capability.Skin: The outer covering of the body that protects it from the environment. It is composed of the DERMIS and the EPIDERMIS.Fibrosis: Any pathological condition where fibrous connective tissue invades any organ, usually as a consequence of inflammation or other injury.Nephroblastoma Overexpressed Protein: A CCN protein family member found at high levels in NEPHROBLASTOMA cells. It is found both intracellularly and in the EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX and may play a role in the regulation of CELL PROLIFERATION and EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX synthesis.Extracellular Matrix: A meshwork-like substance found within the extracellular space and in association with the basement membrane of the cell surface. It promotes cellular proliferation and provides a supporting structure to which cells or cell lysates in culture dishes adhere.Gingival Recession: Exposure of the root surface when the edge of the gum (GINGIVA) moves apically away from the crown of the tooth. This is common with advancing age, vigorous tooth brushing, diseases, or tissue loss of the gingiva, the PERIODONTAL LIGAMENT and the supporting bone (ALVEOLAR PROCESS).Ligaments: Shiny, flexible bands of fibrous tissue connecting together articular extremities of bones. They are pliant, tough, and inextensile.Subcutaneous Tissue: Loose connective tissue lying under the DERMIS, which binds SKIN loosely to subjacent tissues. It may contain a pad of ADIPOCYTES, which vary in number according to the area of the body and vary in size according to the nutritional state.Elastic Tissue: Connective tissue comprised chiefly of elastic fibers. Elastic fibers have two components: ELASTIN and MICROFIBRILS.Gingivoplasty: Surgical reshaping of the gingivae and papillae for correction of deformities (particularly enlargements) and to provide the gingivae with a normal and functional form, the incision creating an external bevel. (Dorland, 28th ed)Gingiva: Oral tissue surrounding and attached to TEETH.Transforming Growth Factor beta: A factor synthesized in a wide variety of tissues. It acts synergistically with TGF-alpha in inducing phenotypic transformation and can also act as a negative autocrine growth factor. TGF-beta has a potential role in embryonal development, cellular differentiation, hormone secretion, and immune function. TGF-beta is found mostly as homodimer forms of separate gene products TGF-beta1, TGF-beta2 or TGF-beta3. Heterodimers composed of TGF-beta1 and 2 (TGF-beta1.2) or of TGF-beta2 and 3 (TGF-beta2.3) have been isolated. The TGF-beta proteins are synthesized as precursor proteins.Orbit: Bony cavity that holds the eyeball and its associated tissues and appendages.Extracellular Matrix Proteins: Macromolecular organic compounds that contain carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and usually, sulfur. These macromolecules (proteins) form an intricate meshwork in which cells are embedded to construct tissues. Variations in the relative types of macromolecules and their organization determine the type of extracellular matrix, each adapted to the functional requirements of the tissue. The two main classes of macromolecules that form the extracellular matrix are: glycosaminoglycans, usually linked to proteins (proteoglycans), and fibrous proteins (e.g., COLLAGEN; ELASTIN; FIBRONECTINS; and LAMININ).Growth Substances: Signal molecules that are involved in the control of cell growth and differentiation.ElastinRaynaud Disease: An idiopathic vascular disorder characterized by bilateral Raynaud phenomenon, the abrupt onset of digital paleness or CYANOSIS in response to cold exposure or stress.Antibodies, Antinuclear: Autoantibodies directed against various nuclear antigens including DNA, RNA, histones, acidic nuclear proteins, or complexes of these molecular elements. Antinuclear antibodies are found in systemic autoimmune diseases including systemic lupus erythematosus, Sjogren's syndrome, scleroderma, polymyositis, and mixed connective tissue disease.Cells, Cultured: Cells propagated in vitro in special media conducive to their growth. Cultured cells are used to study developmental, morphologic, metabolic, physiologic, and genetic processes, among others.Collagen Type I: The most common form of fibrillar collagen. It is a major constituent of bone (BONE AND BONES) and SKIN and consists of a heterotrimer of two alpha1(I) and one alpha2(I) chains.Microscopy, Electron: Microscopy using an electron beam, instead of light, to visualize the sample, thereby allowing much greater magnification. The interactions of ELECTRONS with specimens are used to provide information about the fine structure of that specimen. In TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY the reactions of the electrons that are transmitted through the specimen are imaged. In SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPY an electron beam falls at a non-normal angle on the specimen and the image is derived from the reactions occurring above the plane of the specimen.Microscopy, Electron, Scanning: Microscopy in which the object is examined directly by an electron beam scanning the specimen point-by-point. The image is constructed by detecting the products of specimen interactions that are projected above the plane of the sample, such as backscattered electrons. Although SCANNING TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY also scans the specimen point by point with the electron beam, the image is constructed by detecting the electrons, or their interaction products that are transmitted through the sample plane, so that is a form of TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY.Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic: A chronic, relapsing, inflammatory, and often febrile multisystemic disorder of connective tissue, characterized principally by involvement of the skin, joints, kidneys, and serosal membranes. It is of unknown etiology, but is thought to represent a failure of the regulatory mechanisms of the autoimmune system. The disease is marked by a wide range of system dysfunctions, an elevated erythrocyte sedimentation rate, and the formation of LE cells in the blood or bone marrow.Meridians: Classical loci in ACUPUNCTURE. They are main and collateral channels, regarded as a network of passages, through which vital energy (Qi) circulates and along which acupoints (ACUPUNCTURE POINTS) are distributed. The meridians are a series of 14 lines upon which more than 400 acupoints are located on the body. (The Pinyin Chinese-English Dictionary, p. 359; Dr. Wu Lancheng, Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Beijing)Granulation Tissue: A vascular connective tissue formed on the surface of a healing wound, ulcer, or inflamed tissue. It consists of new capillaries and an infiltrate containing lymphoid cells, macrophages, and plasma cells.Transforming Growth Factor beta1: A subtype of transforming growth factor beta that is synthesized by a wide variety of cells. It is synthesized as a precursor molecule that is cleaved to form mature TGF-beta 1 and TGF-beta1 latency-associated peptide. The association of the cleavage products results in the formation a latent protein which must be activated to bind its receptor. Defects in the gene that encodes TGF-beta1 are the cause of CAMURATI-ENGELMANN SYNDROME.Collagen Type III: A fibrillar collagen consisting of three identical alpha1(III) chains that is widely distributed in many tissues containing COLLAGEN TYPE I. It is particularly abundant in BLOOD VESSELS and may play a role in tissues with elastic characteristics.Cysteine-Rich Protein 61: A CCN protein family member that regulates a variety of extracellular functions including CELL ADHESION; CELL MIGRATION; and EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX synthesis. It may play an important role in the development of branched CAPILLARIES during EMBRYOGENESIS.Immunohistochemistry: Histochemical localization of immunoreactive substances using labeled antibodies as reagents.Epithelial Attachment: A wedge-shaped collar of epithelial cells which form the attachment of the gingiva to the tooth surface at the base of the gingival crevice.Dermatomyositis: A subacute or chronic inflammatory disease of muscle and skin, marked by proximal muscle weakness and a characteristic skin rash. The illness occurs with approximately equal frequency in children and adults. The skin lesions usually take the form of a purplish rash (or less often an exfoliative dermatitis) involving the nose, cheeks, forehead, upper trunk, and arms. The disease is associated with a complement mediated intramuscular microangiopathy, leading to loss of capillaries, muscle ischemia, muscle-fiber necrosis, and perifascicular atrophy. The childhood form of this disease tends to evolve into a systemic vasculitis. Dermatomyositis may occur in association with malignant neoplasms. (From Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, pp1405-6)RNA, Messenger: RNA sequences that serve as templates for protein synthesis. Bacterial mRNAs are generally primary transcripts in that they do not require post-transcriptional processing. Eukaryotic mRNA is synthesized in the nucleus and must be exported to the cytoplasm for translation. Most eukaryotic mRNAs have a sequence of polyadenylic acid at the 3' end, referred to as the poly(A) tail. The function of this tail is not known for certain, but it may play a role in the export of mature mRNA from the nucleus as well as in helping stabilize some mRNA molecules by retarding their degradation in the cytoplasm.Fibrillar Collagens: A family of structurally related collagens that form the characteristic collagen fibril bundles seen in CONNECTIVE TISSUE.Autoantibodies: Antibodies that react with self-antigens (AUTOANTIGENS) of the organism that produced them.Lung Diseases, Interstitial: A diverse group of lung diseases that affect the lung parenchyma. They are characterized by an initial inflammation of PULMONARY ALVEOLI that extends to the interstitium and beyond leading to diffuse PULMONARY FIBROSIS. Interstitial lung diseases are classified by their etiology (known or unknown causes), and radiological-pathological features.Oculomotor Muscles: The muscles that move the eye. Included in this group are the medial rectus, lateral rectus, superior rectus, inferior rectus, inferior oblique, superior oblique, musculus orbitalis, and levator palpebrae superioris.Dermis: A layer of vascularized connective tissue underneath the EPIDERMIS. The surface of the dermis contains innervated papillae. Embedded in or beneath the dermis are SWEAT GLANDS; HAIR FOLLICLES; and SEBACEOUS GLANDS.Cartilage: A non-vascular form of connective tissue composed of CHONDROCYTES embedded in a matrix that includes CHONDROITIN SULFATE and various types of FIBRILLAR COLLAGEN. There are three major types: HYALINE CARTILAGE; FIBROCARTILAGE; and ELASTIC CARTILAGE.Wound Healing: Restoration of integrity to traumatized tissue.Holothuria: A genus of large SEA CUCUMBERS in the family Holothuriidae possessing thick body walls, a warty body surface, and microscopic ossicles.Histocytochemistry: Study of intracellular distribution of chemicals, reaction sites, enzymes, etc., by means of staining reactions, radioactive isotope uptake, selective metal distribution in electron microscopy, or other methods.Fibronectins: Glycoproteins found on the surfaces of cells, particularly in fibrillar structures. The proteins are lost or reduced when these cells undergo viral or chemical transformation. They are highly susceptible to proteolysis and are substrates for activated blood coagulation factor VIII. The forms present in plasma are called cold-insoluble globulins.Hydroxyproline: A hydroxylated form of the imino acid proline. A deficiency in ASCORBIC ACID can result in impaired hydroxyproline formation.Proteoglycans: Glycoproteins which have a very high polysaccharide content.Sjogren's Syndrome: Chronic inflammatory and autoimmune disease in which the salivary and lacrimal glands undergo progressive destruction by lymphocytes and plasma cells resulting in decreased production of saliva and tears. The primary form, often called sicca syndrome, involves both KERATOCONJUNCTIVITIS SICCA and XEROSTOMIA. The secondary form includes, in addition, the presence of a connective tissue disease, usually rheumatoid arthritis.Microfibrils: Components of the extracellular matrix consisting primarily of fibrillin. They are essential for the integrity of elastic fibers.Tongue: A muscular organ in the mouth that is covered with pink tissue called mucosa, tiny bumps called papillae, and thousands of taste buds. The tongue is anchored to the mouth and is vital for chewing, swallowing, and for speech.Pulmonary Fibrosis: A process in which normal lung tissues are progressively replaced by FIBROBLASTS and COLLAGEN causing an irreversible loss of the ability to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream via PULMONARY ALVEOLI. Patients show progressive DYSPNEA finally resulting in death.CCN Intercellular Signaling Proteins: A family of secreted proteins found associated with the EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX and cell surface receptors. They are believed to play a role in modulating the effects of a variety of GROWTH FACTORS and PROTEASES at the cell membrane extracellular matrix. The CCN protein family is named after three protypical members; CYSTEINE-RICH PROTEIN 61; CONNECTIVE TISSUE GROWTH FACTOR; and NEPHROBLASTOMA OVEREXPRESSED PROTEIN.Mast Cells: Granulated cells that are found in almost all tissues, most abundantly in the skin and the gastrointestinal tract. Like the BASOPHILS, mast cells contain large amounts of HISTAMINE and HEPARIN. Unlike basophils, mast cells normally remain in the tissues and do not circulate in the blood. Mast cells, derived from the bone marrow stem cells, are regulated by the STEM CELL FACTOR.Epithelium: One or more layers of EPITHELIAL CELLS, supported by the basal lamina, which covers the inner or outer surfaces of the body.Fascia: Layers of connective tissue of variable thickness. The superficial fascia is found immediately below the skin; the deep fascia invests MUSCLES, nerves, and other organs.Glycosaminoglycans: Heteropolysaccharides which contain an N-acetylated hexosamine in a characteristic repeating disaccharide unit. The repeating structure of each disaccharide involves alternate 1,4- and 1,3-linkages consisting of either N-acetylglucosamine or N-acetylgalactosamine.Skin and Connective Tissue Diseases: A collective term for diseases of the skin and its appendages and of connective tissue.Fluorescent Antibody Technique: Test for tissue antigen using either a direct method, by conjugation of antibody with fluorescent dye (FLUORESCENT ANTIBODY TECHNIQUE, DIRECT) or an indirect method, by formation of antigen-antibody complex which is then labeled with fluorescein-conjugated anti-immunoglobulin antibody (FLUORESCENT ANTIBODY TECHNIQUE, INDIRECT). The tissue is then examined by fluorescence microscopy.Scleroderma, Localized: A term used to describe a variety of localized asymmetrical SKIN thickening that is similar to those of SYSTEMIC SCLERODERMA but without the disease features in the multiple internal organs and BLOOD VESSELS. Lesions may be characterized as patches or plaques (morphea), bands (linear), or nodules.Decorin: A small leucine-rich proteoglycan that interacts with FIBRILLAR COLLAGENS and modifies the EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX structure of CONNECTIVE TISSUE. Decorin has also been shown to play additional roles in the regulation of cellular responses to GROWTH FACTORS. The protein contains a single glycosaminoglycan chain and is similar in structure to BIGLYCAN.Stichopus: A genus of very large, epibenthic SEA CUCUMBERS in the family Stichopodidae, commercially harvested in Southeast Asia for food.Polymyositis: Diseases characterized by inflammation involving multiple muscles. This may occur as an acute or chronic condition associated with medication toxicity (DRUG TOXICITY); CONNECTIVE TISSUE DISEASES; infections; malignant NEOPLASMS; and other disorders. The term polymyositis is frequently used to refer to a specific clinical entity characterized by subacute or slowly progressing symmetrical weakness primarily affecting the proximal limb and trunk muscles. The illness may occur at any age, but is most frequent in the fourth to sixth decade of life. Weakness of pharyngeal and laryngeal muscles, interstitial lung disease, and inflammation of the myocardium may also occur. Muscle biopsy reveals widespread destruction of segments of muscle fibers and an inflammatory cellular response. (Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, pp1404-9)Arthritis, Rheumatoid: A chronic systemic disease, primarily of the joints, marked by inflammatory changes in the synovial membranes and articular structures, widespread fibrinoid degeneration of the collagen fibers in mesenchymal tissues, and by atrophy and rarefaction of bony structures. Etiology is unknown, but autoimmune mechanisms have been implicated.Microbial Collagenase: A metalloproteinase which degrades helical regions of native collagen to small fragments. Preferred cleavage is -Gly in the sequence -Pro-Xaa-Gly-Pro-. Six forms (or 2 classes) have been isolated from Clostridium histolyticum that are immunologically cross-reactive but possess different sequences and different specificities. Other variants have been isolated from Bacillus cereus, Empedobacter collagenolyticum, Pseudomonas marinoglutinosa, and species of Vibrio and Streptomyces. EC 126.96.36.199.Sclera: The white, opaque, fibrous, outer tunic of the eyeball, covering it entirely excepting the segment covered anteriorly by the cornea. It is essentially avascular but contains apertures for vessels, lymphatics, and nerves. It receives the tendons of insertion of the extraocular muscles and at the corneoscleral junction contains the canal of Schlemm. (From Cline et al., Dictionary of Visual Science, 4th ed)Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Microfilament Proteins: Monomeric subunits of primarily globular ACTIN and found in the cytoplasmic matrix of almost all cells. They are often associated with microtubules and may play a role in cytoskeletal function and/or mediate movement of the cell or the organelles within the cell.Biomechanical Phenomena: The properties, processes, and behavior of biological systems under the action of mechanical forces.Gene Expression Regulation: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control (induction or repression) of gene action at the level of transcription or translation.Disease Models, Animal: Naturally occurring or experimentally induced animal diseases with pathological processes sufficiently similar to those of human diseases. They are used as study models for human diseases.Hyraxes: Any of certain small mammals of the order Hyracoidea.Bone and Bones: A specialized CONNECTIVE TISSUE that is the main constituent of the SKELETON. The principle cellular component of bone is comprised of OSTEOBLASTS; OSTEOCYTES; and OSTEOCLASTS, while FIBRILLAR COLLAGENS and hydroxyapatite crystals form the BONE MATRIX.Hypertension, Pulmonary: Increased VASCULAR RESISTANCE in the PULMONARY CIRCULATION, usually secondary to HEART DISEASES or LUNG DISEASES.snRNP Core Proteins: The protein components that constitute the common core of small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles. These proteins are commonly referred as Sm nuclear antigens due to their antigenic nature.Basement Membrane: A darkly stained mat-like EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX (ECM) that separates cell layers, such as EPITHELIUM from ENDOTHELIUM or a layer of CONNECTIVE TISSUE. The ECM layer that supports an overlying EPITHELIUM or ENDOTHELIUM is called basal lamina. Basement membrane (BM) can be formed by the fusion of either two adjacent basal laminae or a basal lamina with an adjacent reticular lamina of connective tissue. BM, composed mainly of TYPE IV COLLAGEN; glycoprotein LAMININ; and PROTEOGLYCAN, provides barriers as well as channels between interacting cell layers.Procollagen: A biosynthetic precursor of collagen containing additional amino acid sequences at the amino-terminal and carboxyl-terminal ends of the polypeptide chains.Synovial Membrane: The inner membrane of a joint capsule surrounding a freely movable joint. It is loosely attached to the external fibrous capsule and secretes SYNOVIAL FLUID.Periodontal Ligament: The fibrous CONNECTIVE TISSUE surrounding the TOOTH ROOT, separating it from and attaching it to the alveolar bone (ALVEOLAR PROCESS).Rheumatic Diseases: Disorders of connective tissue, especially the joints and related structures, characterized by inflammation, degeneration, or metabolic derangement.Breast Implants: Implants used to reconstruct and/or cosmetically enhance the female breast. They have an outer shell or envelope of silicone elastomer and are filled with either saline or silicone gel. The outer shell may be either smooth or textured.Stress, Mechanical: A purely physical condition which exists within any material because of strain or deformation by external forces or by non-uniform thermal expansion; expressed quantitatively in units of force per unit area.Collagen Type V: A fibrillar collagen found widely distributed as a minor component in tissues that contain COLLAGEN TYPE I and COLLAGEN TYPE III. It is a heterotrimeric molecule composed of alpha1(V), alpha2(V) and alpha3(V) subunits. Several forms of collagen type V exist depending upon the composition of the subunits that form the trimer.Lung: Either of the pair of organs occupying the cavity of the thorax that effect the aeration of the blood.Collagenases: Enzymes that catalyze the degradation of collagen by acting on the peptide bonds.Sea Cucumbers: A class of Echinodermata characterized by long, slender bodies.In Situ Hybridization: A technique that localizes specific nucleic acid sequences within intact chromosomes, eukaryotic cells, or bacterial cells through the use of specific nucleic acid-labeled probes.Alkaptonuria: An inborn error of amino acid metabolism resulting from a defect in the enzyme HOMOGENTISATE 1,2-DIOXYGENASE, an enzyme involved in the breakdown of PHENYLALANINE and TYROSINE. It is characterized by accumulation of HOMOGENTISIC ACID in the urine, OCHRONOSIS in various tissues, and ARTHRITIS.Palate, Hard: The anteriorly located rigid section of the PALATE.Hyaluronic Acid: A natural high-viscosity mucopolysaccharide with alternating beta (1-3) glucuronide and beta (1-4) glucosaminidic bonds. It is found in the UMBILICAL CORD, in VITREOUS BODY and in SYNOVIAL FLUID. A high urinary level is found in PROGERIA.Tenascin: Hexameric extracellular matrix glycoprotein transiently expressed in many developing organs and often re-expressed in tumors. It is present in the central and peripheral nervous systems as well as in smooth muscle and tendons. (From Kreis & Vale, Guidebook to the Extracellular Matrix and Adhesion Proteins, 1993, p93)Myositis: Inflammation of a muscle or muscle tissue.Mesenchymoma: A mixed mesenchymal tumor composed of two or more mesodermal cellular elements not commonly associated, not counting fibrous tissue as one of the elements. Mesenchymomas are widely distributed in the body and about 75% are malignant. (Dorland, 27th ed; Holland et al., Cancer Medicine, 3d ed, p1866)Comb and Wattles: Fleshy and reddish outgrowth of skin tissue found on top of the head, attached to the sides of the head, and hanging from the mandible of birds such as turkeys and chickens.Aminopropionitrile: Reagent used as an intermediate in the manufacture of beta-alanine and pantothenic acid.Rats, Wistar: A strain of albino rat developed at the Wistar Institute that has spread widely at other institutions. This has markedly diluted the original strain.Cattle: Domesticated bovine animals of the genus Bos, usually kept on a farm or ranch and used for the production of meat or dairy products or for heavy labor.Cell Differentiation: Progressive restriction of the developmental potential and increasing specialization of function that leads to the formation of specialized cells, tissues, and organs.Gene Expression: The phenotypic manifestation of a gene or genes by the processes of GENETIC TRANSCRIPTION and GENETIC TRANSLATION.Muscle, Skeletal: A subtype of striated muscle, attached by TENDONS to the SKELETON. Skeletal muscles are innervated and their movement can be consciously controlled. They are also called voluntary muscles.Carpus, Animal: The region corresponding to the human WRIST in non-human ANIMALS.Signal Transduction: The intracellular transfer of information (biological activation/inhibition) through a signal pathway. In each signal transduction system, an activation/inhibition signal from a biologically active molecule (hormone, neurotransmitter) is mediated via the coupling of a receptor/enzyme to a second messenger system or to an ion channel. Signal transduction plays an important role in activating cellular functions, cell differentiation, and cell proliferation. Examples of signal transduction systems are the GAMMA-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID-postsynaptic receptor-calcium ion channel system, the receptor-mediated T-cell activation pathway, and the receptor-mediated activation of phospholipases. Those coupled to membrane depolarization or intracellular release of calcium include the receptor-mediated activation of cytotoxic functions in granulocytes and the synaptic potentiation of protein kinase activation. Some signal transduction pathways may be part of larger signal transduction pathways; for example, protein kinase activation is part of the platelet activation signal pathway.Gingival Overgrowth: Excessive growth of the gingiva either by an increase in the size of the constituent cells (GINGIVAL HYPERTROPHY) or by an increase in their number (GINGIVAL HYPERPLASIA). (From Jablonski's Dictionary of Dentistry, 1992, p574)Molecular Sequence Data: Descriptions of specific amino acid, carbohydrate, or nucleotide sequences which have appeared in the published literature and/or are deposited in and maintained by databanks such as GENBANK, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), National Biomedical Research Foundation (NBRF), or other sequence repositories.Rabbits: The species Oryctolagus cuniculus, in the family Leporidae, order LAGOMORPHA. Rabbits are born in burrows, furless, and with eyes and ears closed. In contrast with HARES, rabbits have 22 chromosome pairs.CREST Syndrome: A mild form of LIMITED SCLERODERMA, a multi-system disorder. Its features include symptoms of CALCINOSIS; RAYNAUD DISEASE; ESOPHAGEAL MOTILITY DISORDERS; sclerodactyly, and TELANGIECTASIS. When the defect in esophageal function is not prominent, it is known as CRST syndrome.Reticulin: A scleroprotein fibril consisting mostly of type III collagen. Reticulin fibrils are extremely thin, with a diameter of between 0.5 and 2 um. They are involved in maintaining the structural integrity in a variety of organs.Mucinoses: Mucoid states characterized by the elevated deposition and accumulation of mucin (mucopolysaccharides) in dermal tissue. The fibroblasts are responsible for the production of acid mucopolysaccharides (GLYCOSAMINOGLYCANS) in the ground substance of the connective tissue system. When fibroblasts produce abnormally large quantities of mucopolysaccharides as hyaluronic acid, chondroitin sulfate, or heparin, they accumulate in large amounts in the dermis.Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction: A variation of the PCR technique in which cDNA is made from RNA via reverse transcription. The resultant cDNA is then amplified using standard PCR protocols.Immunoenzyme Techniques: Immunologic techniques based on the use of: (1) enzyme-antibody conjugates; (2) enzyme-antigen conjugates; (3) antienzyme antibody followed by its homologous enzyme; or (4) enzyme-antienzyme complexes. These are used histologically for visualizing or labeling tissue specimens.Biglycan: A small leucine-rich proteoglycan found in a variety of tissues including CAPILLARY ENDOTHELIUM; SKELETAL MUSCLE; CARTILAGE; BONE; and TENDONS. The protein contains two glycosaminoglycan chains and is similar in structure to DECORIN.Fibromatosis, Gingival: Generalized or localized diffuse fibrous overgrowth of the gingival tissue, usually transmitted as an autosomal dominant trait, but some cases are idiopathic and others produced by drugs. The enlarged gingiva is pink, firm, and has a leather-like consistency with a minutely pebbled surface and in severe cases the teeth are almost completely covered and the enlargement projects into the oral vestibule. (Dorland, 28th ed)Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Entrapment of the MEDIAN NERVE in the carpal tunnel, which is formed by the flexor retinaculum and the CARPAL BONES. This syndrome may be associated with repetitive occupational trauma (CUMULATIVE TRAUMA DISORDERS); wrist injuries; AMYLOID NEUROPATHIES; rheumatoid arthritis (see ARTHRITIS, RHEUMATOID); ACROMEGALY; PREGNANCY; and other conditions. Symptoms include burning pain and paresthesias involving the ventral surface of the hand and fingers which may radiate proximally. Impairment of sensation in the distribution of the median nerve and thenar muscle atrophy may occur. (Joynt, Clinical Neurology, 1995, Ch51, p45)Autoimmune Diseases: Disorders that are characterized by the production of antibodies that react with host tissues or immune effector cells that are autoreactive to endogenous peptides.Metalloendopeptidases: ENDOPEPTIDASES which use a metal such as ZINC in the catalytic mechanism.Echinodermata: A phylum of the most familiar marine invertebrates. Its class Stelleroidea contains two subclasses, the Asteroidea (the STARFISH or sea stars) and the Ophiuroidea (the brittle stars, also called basket stars and serpent stars). There are 1500 described species of STARFISH found throughout the world. The second class, Echinoidea, contains about 950 species of SEA URCHINS, heart urchins, and sand dollars. A third class, Holothuroidea, comprises about 900 echinoderms known as SEA CUCUMBERS. Echinoderms are used extensively in biological research. (From Barnes, Invertebrate Zoology, 5th ed, pp773-826)Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinases: A family of secreted protease inhibitory proteins that regulates the activity of SECRETED MATRIX METALLOENDOPEPTIDASES. They play an important role in modulating the proteolysis of EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX, most notably during tissue remodeling and inflammatory processes.Capillaries: The minute vessels that connect the arterioles and venules.Muscles: Contractile tissue that produces movement in animals.Osteogenesis: The process of bone formation. Histogenesis of bone including ossification.Extremities: The farthest or outermost projections of the body, such as the HAND and FOOT.Elasticity: Resistance and recovery from distortion of shape.Acupuncture: The occupational discipline of the traditional Chinese methods of ACUPUNCTURE THERAPY for treating disease by inserting needles along specific pathways or meridians.Osteogenesis Imperfecta: COLLAGEN DISEASES characterized by brittle, osteoporotic, and easily fractured bones. It may also present with blue sclerae, loose joints, and imperfect dentin formation. Most types are autosomal dominant and are associated with mutations in COLLAGEN TYPE I.Corneal Keratocytes: Fibroblasts which occur in the CORNEAL STROMA.Autoantigens: Endogenous tissue constituents that have the ability to interact with AUTOANTIBODIES and cause an immune response.Blood Vessels: Any of the tubular vessels conveying the blood (arteries, arterioles, capillaries, venules, and veins).Blotting, Western: Identification of proteins or peptides that have been electrophoretically separated by blot transferring from the electrophoresis gel to strips of nitrocellulose paper, followed by labeling with antibody probes.Tropoelastin: A salt-soluble precursor of elastin. Lysyl oxidase is instrumental in converting it to elastin in connective tissue.Chick Embryo: The developmental entity of a fertilized chicken egg (ZYGOTE). The developmental process begins about 24 h before the egg is laid at the BLASTODISC, a small whitish spot on the surface of the EGG YOLK. After 21 days of incubation, the embryo is fully developed before hatching.Biopsy: Removal and pathologic examination of specimens in the form of small pieces of tissue from the living body.Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay: An immunoassay utilizing an antibody labeled with an enzyme marker such as horseradish peroxidase. While either the enzyme or the antibody is bound to an immunosorbent substrate, they both retain their biologic activity; the change in enzyme activity as a result of the enzyme-antibody-antigen reaction is proportional to the concentration of the antigen and can be measured spectrophotometrically or with the naked eye. Many variations of the method have been developed.Mesoderm: The middle germ layer of an embryo derived from three paired mesenchymal aggregates along the neural tube.Chondroitin: A mucopolysaccharide constituent of chondrin. (Grant & Hackh's Chemical Dictionary, 5th ed)Actins: Filamentous proteins that are the main constituent of the thin filaments of muscle fibers. The filaments (known also as filamentous or F-actin) can be dissociated into their globular subunits; each subunit is composed of a single polypeptide 375 amino acids long. This is known as globular or G-actin. In conjunction with MYOSINS, actin is responsible for the contraction and relaxation of muscle.Ribonucleoprotein, U1 Small Nuclear: A nuclear RNA-protein complex that plays a role in RNA processing. In the nucleoplasm, the U1 snRNP along with other small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (U2, U4-U6, and U5) assemble into SPLICEOSOMES that remove introns from pre-mRNA by splicing. The U1 snRNA forms base pairs with conserved sequence motifs at the 5'-splice site and recognizes both the 5'- and 3'-splice sites and may have a fundamental role in aligning the two sites for the splicing reaction.Cicatrix: The fibrous tissue that replaces normal tissue during the process of WOUND HEALING.Gingival DiseasesProtein-Lysine 6-Oxidase: An enzyme oxidizing peptidyl-lysyl-peptide in the presence of water & molecular oxygen to yield peptidyl-allysyl-peptide plus ammonia & hydrogen peroxide. EC 188.8.131.52.Procollagen-Lysine, 2-Oxoglutarate 5-Dioxygenase: A mixed-function oxygenase that catalyzes the hydroxylation of peptidyllysine, usually in protocollagen, to peptidylhydroxylysine. The enzyme utilizes molecular oxygen with concomitant oxidative decarboxylation of the cosubstrate 2-oxoglutarate to succinate. EC 184.108.40.206.Biological Markers: Measurable and quantifiable biological parameters (e.g., specific enzyme concentration, specific hormone concentration, specific gene phenotype distribution in a population, presence of biological substances) which serve as indices for health- and physiology-related assessments, such as disease risk, psychiatric disorders, environmental exposure and its effects, disease diagnosis, metabolic processes, substance abuse, pregnancy, cell line development, epidemiologic studies, etc.Mice, Inbred C57BLSkull: The SKELETON of the HEAD including the FACIAL BONES and the bones enclosing the BRAIN.Food Technology: The application of knowledge to the food industry.Mouth Mucosa: Lining of the ORAL CAVITY, including mucosa on the GUMS; the PALATE; the LIP; the CHEEK; floor of the mouth; and other structures. The mucosa is generally a nonkeratinized stratified squamous EPITHELIUM covering muscle, bone, or glands but can show varying degree of keratinization at specific locations.Silicones: A broad family of synthetic organosiloxane polymers containing a repeating silicon-oxygen backbone with organic side groups attached via carbon-silicon bonds. Depending on their structure, they are classified as liquids, gels, and elastomers. (From Merck Index, 12th ed)Matrix Metalloproteinase 3: An extracellular endopeptidase of vertebrate tissues similar to MATRIX METALLOPROTEINASE 1. It digests PROTEOGLYCAN; FIBRONECTIN; COLLAGEN types III, IV, V, and IX, and activates procollagenase. (Enzyme Nomenclature, 1992)Tooth Root: The part of a tooth from the neck to the apex, embedded in the alveolar process and covered with cementum. A root may be single or divided into several branches, usually identified by their relative position, e.g., lingual root or buccal root. Single-rooted teeth include mandibular first and second premolars and the maxillary second premolar teeth. The maxillary first premolar has two roots in most cases. Maxillary molars have three roots. (Jablonski, Dictionary of Dentistry, 1992, p690)Recombinant Proteins: Proteins prepared by recombinant DNA technology.Cation Exchange Resins: High molecular weight insoluble polymers which contain functional anionic groups that are capable of undergoing exchange reactions with cations.Skin DiseasesDental Cementum: The bonelike rigid connective tissue covering the root of a tooth from the cementoenamel junction to the apex and lining the apex of the root canal, also assisting in tooth support by serving as attachment structures for the periodontal ligament. (Jablonski, Dictionary of Dentistry, 1992)Job Syndrome: Primary immunodeficiency syndrome characterized by recurrent infections and hyperimmunoglobulinemia E. Most cases are sporadic. Of the rare familial forms, the dominantly inherited subtype has additional connective tissue, dental and skeletal involvement that the recessive type does not share.Collagen Type VI: A non-fibrillar collagen that forms a network of MICROFIBRILS within the EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX of CONNECTIVE TISSUE. The alpha subunits of collagen type VI assemble into antiparallel, overlapping dimers which then align to form tetramers.Biocompatible Materials: Synthetic or natural materials, other than DRUGS, that are used to replace or repair any body TISSUES or bodily function.Histological Techniques: Methods of preparing tissue for examination and study of the origin, structure, function, or pathology.Joint DiseasesVasculitis: Inflammation of any one of the blood vessels, including the ARTERIES; VEINS; and rest of the vasculature system in the body.Scleroderma, Limited: The least progressive form of SYSTEMIC SCLERODERMA with skin thickening restricted to the face, neck and areas distal to the elbows and/or knees, sparing the trunk. The CREST SYNDROME is a form of limited scleroderma.Ion Exchange Resins: High molecular weight, insoluble polymers which contain functional groups that are capable of undergoing exchange reactions (ION EXCHANGE) with either cations or anions.Epithelial Cells: Cells that line the inner and outer surfaces of the body by forming cellular layers (EPITHELIUM) or masses. Epithelial cells lining the SKIN; the MOUTH; the NOSE; and the ANAL CANAL derive from ectoderm; those lining the RESPIRATORY SYSTEM and the DIGESTIVE SYSTEM derive from endoderm; others (CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM and LYMPHATIC SYSTEM) derive from mesoderm. Epithelial cells can be classified mainly by cell shape and function into squamous, glandular and transitional epithelial cells.Dissection: The separation and isolation of tissues for surgical purposes, or for the analysis or study of their structures.Keratan Sulfate: A sulfated mucopolysaccharide initially isolated from bovine cornea. At least two types are known. Type I, found mostly in the cornea, contains D-galactose and D-glucosamine-6-O-sulfate as the repeating unit; type II, found in skeletal tissues, contains D-galactose and D-galactosamine-6-O-sulfate as the repeating unit.Foreign-Body Reaction: Chronic inflammation and granuloma formation around irritating foreign bodies.Phenotype: The outward appearance of the individual. It is the product of interactions between genes, and between the GENOTYPE and the environment.Graves Ophthalmopathy: An autoimmune disorder of the EYE, occurring in patients with Graves disease. Subtypes include congestive (inflammation of the orbital connective tissue), myopathic (swelling and dysfunction of the extraocular muscles), and mixed congestive-myopathic ophthalmopathy.Polyarteritis Nodosa: A form of necrotizing non-granulomatous inflammation occurring primarily in medium-sized ARTERIES, often with microaneurysms. It is characterized by muscle, joint, and abdominal pain resulting from arterial infarction and scarring in affected organs. Polyarteritis nodosa with lung involvement is called CHURG-STRAUSS SYNDROME.Amino Acid Sequence: The order of amino acids as they occur in a polypeptide chain. This is referred to as the primary structure of proteins. It is of fundamental importance in determining PROTEIN CONFORMATION.Skin Aging: The process of aging due to changes in the structure and elasticity of the skin over time. It may be a part of physiological aging or it may be due to the effects of ultraviolet radiation, usually through exposure to sunlight.Cell Movement: The movement of cells from one location to another. Distinguish from CYTOKINESIS which is the process of dividing the CYTOPLASM of a cell.Kidney: Body organ that filters blood for the secretion of URINE and that regulates ion concentrations.Immobilization: The restriction of the MOVEMENT of whole or part of the body by physical means (RESTRAINT, PHYSICAL) or chemically by ANALGESIA, or the use of TRANQUILIZING AGENTS or NEUROMUSCULAR NONDEPOLARIZING AGENTS. It includes experimental protocols used to evaluate the physiologic effects of immobility.Cell Line: Established cell cultures that have the potential to propagate indefinitely.Chondroitin Sulfate Proteoglycans: Proteoglycans consisting of proteins linked to one or more CHONDROITIN SULFATE-containing oligosaccharide chains.Models, Biological: Theoretical representations that simulate the behavior or activity of biological processes or diseases. For disease models in living animals, DISEASE MODELS, ANIMAL is available. Biological models include the use of mathematical equations, computers, and other electronic equipment.Tensile Strength: The maximum stress a material subjected to a stretching load can withstand without tearing. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 5th ed, p2001)Hyaluronoglucosaminidase: An enzyme that catalyzes the random hydrolysis of 1,4-linkages between N-acetyl-beta-D-glucosamine and D-glucuronate residues in hyaluronate. (From Enzyme Nomenclature, 1992) There has been use as ANTINEOPLASTIC AGENTS to limit NEOPLASM METASTASIS.Smad2 Protein: A receptor-regulated smad protein that undergoes PHOSPHORYLATION by ACTIVIN RECEPTORS, TYPE I. It regulates TRANSFORMING GROWTH FACTOR BETA and ACTIVIN signaling.Achilles Tendon: A fibrous cord that connects the muscles in the back of the calf to the HEEL BONE.Collagen Type IV: A non-fibrillar collagen found in the structure of BASEMENT MEMBRANE. Collagen type IV molecules assemble to form a sheet-like network which is involved in maintaining the structural integrity of basement membranes. The predominant form of the protein is comprised of two alpha1(IV) subunits and one alpha2(IV) subunit, however, at least six different alpha subunits can be incorporated into the heterotrimer.Muscle, Smooth: Unstriated and unstriped muscle, one of the muscles of the internal organs, blood vessels, hair follicles, etc. Contractile elements are elongated, usually spindle-shaped cells with centrally located nuclei. Smooth muscle fibers are bound together into sheets or bundles by reticular fibers and frequently elastic nets are also abundant. (From Stedman, 25th ed)Myositis Ossificans: A disease characterized by bony deposits or the ossification of muscle tissue.Endolymphatic Duct: The part of the membranous labyrinth that traverses the bony vestibular aqueduct and emerges through the bone of posterior cranial fossa (CRANIAL FOSSA, POSTERIOR) where it expands into a blind pouch called the endolymphatic sac.Base Sequence: The sequence of PURINES and PYRIMIDINES in nucleic acids and polynucleotides. It is also called nucleotide sequence.Periodontium: The structures surrounding and supporting the tooth. Periodontium includes the gum (GINGIVA), the alveolar bone (ALVEOLAR PROCESS), the DENTAL CEMENTUM, and the PERIODONTAL LIGAMENT.Trabecular Meshwork: A porelike structure surrounding the entire circumference of the anterior chamber through which aqueous humor circulates to the canal of Schlemm.Chymases: A family of neutral serine proteases with CHYMOTRYPSIN-like activity. Chymases are primarily found in the SECRETORY GRANULES of MAST CELLS and are released during mast cell degranulation.Matrix Metalloproteinase 1: A member of the metalloproteinase family of enzymes that is principally responsible for cleaving FIBRILLAR COLLAGEN. It can degrade interstitial collagens, types I, II and III.Regeneration: The physiological renewal, repair, or replacement of tissue.Physical Processes: The forces and principles of action of matter and energy.